Why Do We Need Spiritual Experiences Daily?
Our bodies are magnificent masterworks, equipped with advanced systems to perfectly sustain life. In “God’s Greatest Creation,” President Russell M. Nelson describes the gift of our physical bodies in great detail. As part of God’s grand design, our bodies need daily physical nourishment to function properly. Occasional meals, while satisfying, aren’t enough to keep us alive.
The same holds true for our spiritual lives. Occasional spiritual experiences, while satisfying, aren’t enough to sustain our spiritual growth. As Elder D. Todd Christofferson teaches, “The spiritual need for sustenance is equally strong. It comes not in drinking water and eating food, but in our constant, daily efforts of communion with God.” Watch as he testifies of the need for daily spiritual experiences in “Daily Bread: Pattern” (for more, see part 2
and part 3
How Do We Seek Spiritual Experiences Daily?
In his counsel, Elder Christofferson reminds us that like the manna God provided for the children of Israel in the wilderness (see Exodus 16
), He has provided the means for our daily spiritual sustenance through daily prayer and daily scripture study.
President Ezra Taft Benson has counseled: “If we would advance in holiness—increase in favor with God—nothing can take the place of prayer. . . . Give prayer—daily prayer, secret prayer—a foremost place in your lives. Let no day pass without it. Communion with the Almighty has been a source of strength, inspiration, and enlightenment through the world’s history to men and women who have shaped the destinies of individuals and nations for good.”
When evaluating your personal prayers, consider the following:
- Do I begin and end each day with a sincere prayer to a loving Heavenly Father who is anxious to bless and direct my life? (see Alma 37:37).
- When I am having troubles in my family or at work or in relationships with others, do my thoughts turn to prayer? (see Alma 34:17–28).
- When I think through the blessings in my life, do I offer a prayer of thanksgiving? (see Mosiah 26:39).
Daily Scripture Study
When we study the scriptures, we learn the language of the Spirit so we can have spiritual experiences in our lives every day. President Spencer W. Kimball taught: “I find that when I get casual in my relationships with divinity and when it seems that no divine ear is listening and no divine voice is speaking, that I am far, far away. If I immerse myself in the scriptures the distance narrows and the spirituality returns.”
When evaluating your daily personal scripture study, consider the following:
- Do I spend time every day really studying the scriptures? President Thomas S. Monson teaches, “Crash courses [on scripture study] are not nearly so effective as the day-to-day reading and application of the scriptures in our lives.”
- Do I look for doctrine and principles in the scriptures that can be applied to my life personally? Elder Richard G. Scott instructs: “Principles are concentrated truth, packaged for application to a wide variety of circumstances. A true principle makes decisions clear even under the most confusing and compelling circumstances.”
- Do I turn to the scriptures for answers to personal struggles? President Henry B. Eyring teaches: “Going to the scriptures to learn what to do makes all the difference. The Lord can teach us. When we come to a crisis in our life, such as losing a child or spouse, we should go looking in the scriptures for specific help. We will find answers in the scriptures. The Lord seemed to anticipate all of our problems and all of our needs, and He put help in the scriptures for us—if only we seek it.”
We should crave daily spiritual experiences like we crave water to drink and food to eat. As we spend time each day in sincere prayer and purposeful scripture study, we will come closer to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and have the spiritual experiences we seek.
Tiffany Tolman graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in humanities/English literature. She is happily married with four wonderful children and serves as an early-morning seminary teacher in Layton, Utah.